Beer war erupts at Tyneside and Northumberland CAMRA meeting

Reads 574 • Replies 11 • Started Tuesday, May 15, 2012 6:49:27 AM CT

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SilkTork
beers 5923 º places 95 º 06:49 Tue 5/15/2012

http://www.sundaysun.co.uk/news/north-east-news/2012/05/13/beer-war-erupts-at-tyneside-and-northumberland-camra-meeting-79310-30956068/


There’s actually nothing new or unusual in the report, but it’s curious that the local paper decided to report the incident.

I did, though, like the comment of the "press officer" (grand title!):

"But they don’t want to come to meetings and sit down and listen and take minutes and agendas. They just want to talk about beer and nothing else."


No, Mr Camra, I also don’t want to sit down and listen and take minutes and agendas. Get a life!

 
chriso
beers 7536 º places 721 º 07:13 Tue 5/15/2012

Originally posted by SilkTork
I did, though, like the comment of the "press officer" (grand title!):

"But they don’t want to come to meetings and sit down and listen and take minutes and agendas. They just want to talk about beer and nothing else."

Yeah, that’s certainly the way to represent CAMRA to the press as a vibrant and lively organisation.

 
imdownthepub
beers 15518 º places 1161 º 09:20 Tue 5/15/2012

It’s happening in many branches, Central Camra do like to send out edicts that they expect to have discussed and in the end, people like to go out and enjoy themselves and, yes, talk about beer strangely. I certainly haven’t been to a Committee Meeting for a few years now.

 
harrisoni
beers 19535 º places 38 º 09:26 Tue 5/15/2012

You made me visit The Sun’s website. I feel dirty. And not in a good way. I kinda agree with both sides. I go to Camra meetings to talk and enthuse about beer, most of the branch like minutes and procedure. It is a bit of a closed shop at times. As for Camra being democratic, well it could be more democratic if it did more online. Still I will be doing the Camra social crawl round Canterbury on Saturday.

 
EdKing
beers 2664 º places 199 º 10:05 Tue 5/15/2012

Hilarious. These crazy young people just wanting to talk about beer.

 
DanielBrown
beers 4563 º places 334 º 10:58 Tue 5/15/2012

Andrew Mitchell is a blogger who you will find on Twitter as @sheriff_mitchell (or similar). He is currently doing one (detailed) review of a new beer each day, and they are excellently written. Definitely worth seeking out. I would post a link if I could use my gone properly.

 
thesheriff
11:17 Tue 5/15/2012

Sadly this article was published about a month too late. The original and equally as crazy write up can be found here -

http://www.journallive.co.uk/north-east-taste/news-and-features/2012/04/27/camra-meeting-causes-a-storm-with-local-breweries-61634-30848933/

Regardless of my views, I have been co-opted on the Committee and hopefully will help to bring some semblance of change within the branch. The fact of the matter is the change has to be driven from within so that means taking one for the team and going to the meetings. Here is what I wrote about my first meeting back in January.

http://ohbeeryme.tumblr.com/post/16837638025/first-camra-meeting

Hey, who doesn’t love a good beery rant now and again.

 
DanielBrown
beers 4563 º places 334 º 11:18 Tue 5/15/2012

I demonstrably can’t even spell fone properly, which is hopeless. Anyway, the blog is called ohbeeryme

 
cgarvieuk
beers 26365 º places 406 º 23:52 Tue 5/15/2012

Originally posted by EdKing
Hilarious. These crazy young people just wanting to talk about beer.


yeah , i found that quote amusing as well

 
chriso
beers 7536 º places 721 º 03:54 Wed 5/16/2012

Originally posted by thesheriff
Regardless of my views, I have been co-opted on the Committee and hopefully will help to bring some semblance of change within the branch. The fact of the matter is the change has to be driven from within so that means taking one for the team and going to the meetings. Here is what I wrote about my first meeting back in January.

http://ohbeeryme.tumblr.com/post/16837638025/first-camra-meeting



Nice piece Andy & welcome to RateBeer. Keep up the good work.

As with any membership organisation, change does indeed have to be driven from within and that can be a lonely business, at least at the outset. But it also has to be based on some grass roots engagement too. I’ve said elsewhere that I think the claims of "CAMRA" being old fashioned and reactionary are rather exaggerated. It’s probably true that many of the Branch Committees are that way inclined and, with the general membership tending towards apathy, that is the stance that tends to get projected.

Having become actively involved in a Trade Union back in the early 80s, for similar reasons to yours for getting involved with CAMRA, and getting to rather elevated status without really trying, I know only too well how tempting it can be to do things your own way once you get into a position of power, safe in the knowledge that the largely apathetic membership probably won’t notice, or care, what you are up to. Then you become effectively the same as the old bosses that you got involved to challenge.

I think that, unless you can galvanise the general membership into enthusiastic engagement, a similar group dynamic is likely to permeate every membership organisation. One way to coax the more progressive members towards more active engagement is to arrange "fringe" activities, such as meet the (innovative) brewer events and the like. If the reactionary committee doesn’t want to support that under the CAMRA banner, that doesn’t really matter as long as you get CAMRA members (and hopefully new CAMRA recruits) along. That way you start to build a power base and, you never know, some of the older school who attend might begin to think a bit differently too.

 
evilempire
beers 158 º places 81 º 05:14 Wed 5/16/2012

maybe all new committee members should be obliged to attend a Nottingham CAMRA meeting to see how it should be done! big attendance at meetings, interesting stuff like meet the brewer, and the most militant chairman in CAMRA!